15/10/2010

"The Only Way is Essex?" No it isn't, seriously, don't go there...

Second episode of the only way is Essex and the question that kept repeating itself to me while I was watching was; "Why?" Why on Earth has this show been commissioned? Why is everyone Orange? Why do they keep saying, “I luv it” in extremely high-pitched voices that are only JUST within range of normal human hearing? Why is everyone called babe (someone please explain)?? Who is it supposed to appeal to? It’s supposed to be the UK’s answer to The Hills, I sincerely hope that no one in the US is watching this and assuming that this lot are representative of any section of British society…

If this show is to be believed, then Essex is full of the most appalling, self-obsessed men on the face of the earth (if Essex were a country Mark would be King Rat…) The female inhabitants are no better, brainless bimbos whose only ambition is to get a bigger boob job and a boyfriend. Bearing in mind the men they have to choose from, I can’t understand why they haven’t all taken up residence in the nearest convent. 

Denise Van Outen does announce at the beginning that a number of the situations are ‘set up’ for our general edification (OK, she doesn’t use that word, but I’m sure that’s what she meant….). I can confirm that it isn’t edifying at all. Mark, who appears to be the central character, has to be one of the most obnoxious people on the face of the planet. Constantly bullying ‘Arg” his long-suffering best friend and baiting Lauren, his ex girlfriend, who it appears MAY (after 9 years) be starting to realise what a tit he actually is. Mark seems happy to provide ample evidence of this every episode, indeed, every time he appears on screen…. Take for example the opening sequence of episode 2 where the cast were shown watching episode 1. Mark’s assessment of Lauren getting her fake tan “She looks f'ckung 19 stone the div” – charming… Mark trying out a new convertible in a car show room: “Is it a bird magnet?…… I could probably be in a Skoda and still get birds” Only in Essex Mark, only in Essex.

There were a couple of comedy moments, such as Lauren’s interview for a job helping out at events during “Essex fashion week,” where she would be working with 2 twins (so 4 people? Deep sigh…). “I’ve heard of London fashion week,” she said, “I’ve never heard of Essex fashion week”. Don’t worry Lauren, neither have we.. Amy's (who’s ambition is to be bigger than Jordan) admission at the speed dating event that her “life was one big embarrassment” must also have raised a few titters from the viewing public!! Lauren and her friend looking at a potential flat to move into (“I luv it”) and the Estate agent’s main selling point being that there are “a lot of footballers living next door, I’m sure you’ll fit in”.

To be honest, I have never been so glad to be a resident of London in my entire life, people must surely be leaving Essex in droves as we speak to avoid being associated with this lot? (If not, why aren’t they?) The main problem with this show though is not the people, excluding Mark, most of them are harmless enough and some of them actually seem quite sweet (e.g. Kirk the nightclub owner, Arg the hapless best friend and Mark’s Nan – who should really be given her own show!), or the obviously set up situations. The main problem is that the show is actually quite dull - Not sure I’ll be watching again...

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